By Judy Sheridan
W. H. “Dub” Bearden, 83, knows a thing or two about Aledo.
He moved to the little country town in 1950, married local girl Verna Shaw in First Baptist Church soon after, and worked to raise a daughter and two sons in the community. Kathy, Randy and Rusty were all educated in Aledo public schools.
When First Baptist invited him to be a deacon in 1951, Bearden offered his support — and still does.
When Aledo VFD was recruiting volunteers the same year, he put his life on the line, serving the department until 2010.
As a former Aledo ISD trustee, Bearden can remember a dirt contractor blading the Bearcats’ first football field. The fledgling team felt lucky to score, he said, much less win a game.
“There were only two or three substitutes on the team, and if a kid wanted to play sports, they had to play football first,” he said. “They had my 100-pound-plus son on the line as a guard.”
In 1963, when talk of Aledo’s incorporation began to surface, there were lots of protests, Bearden said.
“There were several who did not want it,” he said. “They claimed it would ruin the town.”
Privately, Bearden shared the political shenanigans of some who were opposed — “best left as a dead horse,” he warned, but recalls why he was in the opposite camp.
“One of the main things I was interested in was tying into the sewer,” he said. “I had built a three-room house on black dirt, and septic tanks don’t work well in that. The city was going to put water and sewer in, but I couldn’t tie into the sewer without tying into the water.”
After the incorporation was approved — by a wide margin, Bearden remembers, he was appointed as one of Aledo’s first city secretaries.
Briefly he worked alongside Mayor Bob Daugherty and a city council of two — Felix Reynolds and Vernon Whitmire — before landing a job as a foreman at Mary’s Creek Ranch, north of the Interstate.
In later years, Bearden has also served on the city’s grievance board and board of adjustments.
Though the longtime resident protests his mind is “like a computer that erases every night,” he recollects earlier times with ease — the town’s three former grocery stores, for example, the advent of natural gas.
The incorporation was a good thing, he reflects, giving the city organization and control.
“If we hadn’t done that, we’d still be a little country town,” he said. “We wouldn’t have all these additions coming in.”
The attitudes of Aledo residents — especially toward growth — have changed as much as their surroundings, Bearden observed.
“People were different then,” he said. “Back then, people who came in didn’t want anyone to come in behind them.”
Bearden’s home on FM 1187, sandwiched between commercial property, is hard to get to these days with the corridor’s reconstruction, but he knows the down side is fleeting.
The change will only add value to the lot he bought and paid for long ago.
“I’m sitting on a gold mine,” he said.
By Judy Sheridan
- Aledo ExtrA
Suspicious house fire under investigation
The Weatherford fire marshal says a fire that damaged a house and killed two puppies Wednesday night is being investigated as a suspicious fire and a suspect is in jail on unrelated charges.
Parker County Attorney John Forrest will ask county commissioners for additional funds as county budget discussions begin this year; he hopes to hire another attorney to help with an increase in Child Protective Services cases.
Firefighter arrested on child sex assault charges
A volunteer Hudson Oaks firefighter is in the Parker County Jail on charges he repeatedly sexually assaulted two young relatives over a several year period.
Richard Frederick Adams Sr., 62, arrested Monday, faces two charges of continuous sexual abuse of a child under 14, a first-degree felony.
Developer withdraws site plan
ANNETTA —A controversial 34-home subdivision proposed for a 41-acre tract on Duncan Road will not go forward as planned, according to action taken by both the proposed developer and the Annetta Town Council after a public hearing Thursday night.
Aledo City Council to meet July 24
The Aledo City Council will meet at 7 p.m. Thursday, July 24, in the Aledo Community Center, 104 Robinson Court, Aledo.
Fires damage business, home
Two separate fires around 2 p.m. July 15 damaged a Willow Park business and destroyed the home of a Weatherford family.
Letter to the Editor
Thursday night, July 17, I was present for a surprisingly interesting experience when State Representative candidate Matthew Britt addressed a small group of supporters, followed by a question and answer session.
ESD 1, Annetta South close on fire station site
Parker County Emergency Services District No. 1 and Annetta South officials said Tuesday that the ESD is homing in on a site for a new fire station to serve residents in the Annettas and surrounding areas. Annetta South is expected to consider a zoning change to accommodate a new station next month.
Registration has begun for Aledo ISD
Aledo ISD enrollment for the 2014-15 school year began yesterday, July 21, and students new to the district need to register before school begins, Monday, Aug. 25.
County scrambling to fill elections post
Former Parker County Assistant Elections Administrator Laura Watkins, who sought, but was not appointed to the post of Parker County Elections Administrator after Robert Parten retired, last week began work as assistant elections administrator for Palo Pinto County, Palo Pinto County Elections Administrator Judith Evans has confirmed.
- More Aledo ExtrA Headlines
- Suspicious house fire under investigation